[OSM-talk] SteveC should decide

Matt Amos zerebubuth at gmail.com
Sat Oct 3 23:11:05 BST 2009

On 10/3/09, Russ Nelson <nelson at crynwr.com> wrote:
> Matt Amos writes:
>  > > I point to the +1 year age of the Noname proposal and recent
>  > > inactivity and suggest that convergance isn't happening.
>  >
>  > maybe there isn't a need for convergence here? we've got a nonames map
>  > to help mappers decide where their time might be well-spent.
> And well-spent and well-spent and well-spent, as mappers repeatedly
> home in on roads which have no name, and no way to tell the nonames
> map that there is in fact no name.  So they put in
> name=Fiddle-de-Faddle Street and gee, nonames stops marking it as not
> having a name.  WIN!
> Can I prove that this has happened?  No.  And that's the problem.  If
> it happened, then we now have a namless road which is named only in
> OSM.  I can understand mistakes and omissions.  I can't understand why
> people would advocate FOR error.

no one is advocating for error. you seem to be advocating for a tag
with the sole purpose of not rendering something in a single renderer.
to me, that seems wrong.

> The claim was made that convergance happens automatically, with no
> guidance.  I've presented an example where it doesn't, and now you're
> trying to say that when convergance doesn't happen, it's because
> convergance isn't necessary.

let me put it a different way: maybe convergence hasn't happened
*yet*. maybe there isn't the impetus from mappers and tool-makers to
converge any quicker? i don't consider complaining on the mailing
lists / irc to be impetus. what works is either well-reasoned
arguments or alternative actions, such as building your own nonames
layer that takes the noname=yes tag into account.

>  > steve is perfectly able to weigh in on one side of the argument or
>  > other.
> Actually, not, he's not.  He's told me that he's tried doing that, and
> when he does, he's told that he's shilling for Cloudmade, or that he's
> evil, or that he has a portal to hell in his basement, or in his attic
> or wherever, or that he's breeding strange conglomeration animals.

he's perfectly able - he just doesn't want to. i fully understand and
commiserate the reasons why he doesn't, along with you. and he *is*
breeding strange conglomeration animals, see the attachment to [1], a
picture i helped him take. very exciting genius research ;-)

>  > where we're disagreeing is that you're suggesting some sort of
>  > special status to his opinion, and i'm suggesting that, while his
>  > opinion is important and valuable, there are others in the
>  > community who are equally well-placed to offer good guidance.
> No.  A project founder always has a greater gravitas.  It's possible
> to destroy that gravitas through years of a consistent pattern of
> misbehavior, but Steve hasn't done that.

we'll have to agree to disagree. i don't think that steve's status as
founder gives him any special insight above and beyond his natural

>  > finally, for effective leadership there also has to be the opportunity
>  > for people to *not* follow. if you want to follow someone's leadership
>  > that's fine. but please don't try to compel that followership onto
>  > others.
> Where does this WEIRD idea come from that I'm advocating that anybody
> be forced to do anything???????????  I've already said that the
> paragraph you quoted earlier was taken out of context and then
> misinterpreted.

note that i didn't say "forced" this time, but i do get the impression
that you're suggesting that people should be told what to do and how
to tag. here are some more (potentially out-of-context) quotes, which
have helped me form this impression:

"So, Steve, would you PLEASE tell us what the canonical binary true
and false values should be?  And when you're done there, would you
choose one of the schemes for marking a highway or a bridleway with no

"The reason [the tagging debate] eternal is because there's no one to choose."

"No, I'm saying that mountain=green and mountain=viridian are the same
thing, but that when SteveC tells us to use green we should use

"So, when we have true/false, yes/no, and 0/1, then damnit, we should
look to SteveC to pick one of them as arbitrarily as if he was picking
between mountain=green and mountain=blue."

"I suggest instead that in cases such as these, SteveC should bless
one of them with his Holy Water of Antioch (and the number of the tags
shall be 3, no more and no less).  His blessing will tip the stable
disconvergance in one direction."

> The OSM community is hostile to leadership even when that leadership
> merely renders advice.  Frederick's advice to create a committee to
> provide leadership is not useful advice.

maybe the community feels that such leadership advice is not useful
advice, just as you feel towards frederik's advice?

>  SteveC (or you, or Shawn, or
> Andy) are willing to provide advice.  The community has been told that
> anybody who takes advice is a sheep, or that we intentionally don't
> tag consistently and that's okay, or that we'll never ever do things
> that way here.

you're the only one saying "anybody who takes advice is a sheep". i
can only find 4 uses of the word "sheep" in this thread. the first by
frederik and the remaining 3 by you.

-- frederik in reply to gervase at 12:08am
"Because the leader is the intellectual visionary and the sheep cannot
be expected to have the information or the intellectual capacity to
understand. Yes, that is true with many religious, political, or
business leaders of past and present."

i think frederik was attempting, by use of sarcasm, to show the
undesirable opinion amongst various leaders that non-leaders aren't
capable of good decision-making. i'm pretty sure he wasn't suggesting
that this is the current situation in OSM.

> I seem to have to repeat the disclaimer every couple of paragraphs:
> I'm not talking about forcing anybody to do anything.  I AM talking
> about not denigrating the concept of leadership.

then we're in complete agreement; steve (and everyone else) should be
able to say what they like and give whatever advice they think is
fitting without fear of ad-hominem attacks. also, that there should be
no compulsion on anyone to take one person's advice over any other's
on the basis of their position within the project, rather than the
merit of what their advice.



[1] http://lists.openstreetmap.org/pipermail/legal-talk/2009-March/002236.html

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